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The Tudor Society
  • September 7 – The wedding of Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk, and Catherine Willoughby

    On this day in Tudor history, 7th September 1533, the very same day that Queen Anne Boleyn gave birth to a daughter (the future Elizabeth I), forty-nine-year-old Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk, married his ward, fourteen-year-old Catherine Willoughby.

    The marriage took place just over two months after the death of his previous wife, Mary Tudor. Queen of France.

    Find out more about Charles and Catherine, how they came to be married, what their marriage was like, and what happened to them…

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  • September 6 – The inventor of modern shorthand

    On this day in history, 6th September 1615, in the reign of King James I, Timothy Bright, was buried at St Mary’s Church, Shrewsbury.

    Bright was a Tudor physician and clergyman, and also invented modern shorthand

    Bright is known for works published in Queen Elizabeth I’s reign, including his 1588 “Characterie: an Arte of Shorte, Swifte, and Secrete Writing by Character” in which he explains his invention, a system of straight lines, circles and half circles as shorthand. Bright’s work has, of course, helped people the world over.

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  • September 5 – The death of Edmund Bonner, Bishop of London

    On this day in Tudor history, 5th September 1569, in the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, Edmund Bonner, Bishop of London, died in Marshalsea Prison.

    Bonner had started his career in Henry VIII’s reign and was not just a churchman, he was also a diplomat. He’d been nicknamed “Bloody Bonner” in Mary I’s reign from being in charge of burning reformers in London.

    Find out about his life, career and how he ended up dying in prison…

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  • Anne of Cleves True or False Quiz

    As yesterday was the anniversary of the marriage of Anne of Cleves and Henry VIII being agreed in 1539, I thought I’d test your knowledge of this fourth wife of Henry VIII with a true or false quiz.

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  • September 4 – Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, dies.

    On this day in Tudor history, 4th September 1588, Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, died at Cornbury.

    He was on his way to Buxton to take the waters for his health.

    The death of her favourite, and the man that is considered to be her ‘true love’, was a devastating blow to Elizabeth I and her reaction to the news shows just how much she loved her “sweet Robin”.

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  • September 3 – Death of playwright Robert Greene

    On this day in Tudor history, 3rd September 1592, in the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, Elizabethan writer and playwright Robert Greene died in London.

    Robert Greene was a prolific writer, but he is best known for the pamphlet “Greene’s Groats-worth of Wit bought with a Million of Repentance”. It was said that he wrote the pamphlet on his deathbed.

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  • Friday from the Archives – The re-identification of a ‘Catherine Howard’ portrait

    It’s Friday, which means it’s time for me to share a Tudor history treasure from our archives.

    This week, I have a wonderful expert talk from Laura Loney and Ashley Risk who have done extensive research to determine who might be in the famous oval portrait once thought to be Catherine Howard.

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  • September 2 – A naval commander dies

    On this day in Tudor history, 2nd September 1591, in the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, Sir Richard Grenville died at sea.

    Grenville was a naval commander and explorer and he died from injuries sustained while commanding his ship, The Revenge, in the Battle of Flores in the Azores.

    Unfortunately, Grenville’s death was a result of him disobeying orders and doing his own thing.

    Alfred, Lord Tennyson, wrote about the battle and the loss of The Revenge in his “The Revenge: A Ballad of the Fleet”.

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  • September 1 – The birth of actor Edward Alleyn

    On this day in Tudor history, 1st September 1566, actor Edward Alleyn was born in the parish of St Botolph without Bishopsgate, London. He was baptised the following day.

    Let me share some facts about Edward Alleyn, including his personal life, the plays he was involved in, his theatre investments, and his desire to be appointed master of the bears, bulls and mastiff dogs…

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